Match acquires Marketing Drive

The Canadian agency continues its U.S. expansion, picking up the shopper marketing agency and its digital arm.

Match Marketing kicked off the year with a bang, announcing the acquisition of Marketing Drive and its subsidiary digital shop Weld Media. The Toronto-based agency took full control of Marketing Drive, which will be rebranded Match Drive. Match takes over Marketing Drive’s 160 employees spread across four offices. This brings Match’s office count to seven, including locations in Montreal, Toronto, Chicago and Boston. Match will open its eighth office next week in New York.

Marketing Drive brings its client base, including pharmaceutical company Novartis (makers of Buckley’s), Absolut Vodka, Malibu Rum and Dunkin Donuts. Marketing Drive recently picked up an award for its U.S. work with Danone on a 2012 back-to-school shopper marketing program, inviting kids to nominate their school for a chance to win a new playground.

Marketing Drive is Match’s fifth acquisition in the past 12 months, kicked off with its purchase of Action Marketing Group in May 2012. It is part of Match’s push to create North America’s largest end-to-end shopper marketing agency, says president and CEO Brett Farren.